Sunday, December 4, 2011

Henry Holmes died in a horse race

Henry W.V. Holmes' tombstone in Adelaide's West Terrace Cemetery
Open picture in new window to enlarge.
Occasionally, I have the macabre hobby of walking through cemeteries (developed when I had to take shortcuts through Colma). I look to look at the tombstones and wonder a bit about peoples' lives. I think it's nice to be remembered long after you're gone.

When I was in Australia a while back, I disembarked from the train at Adelaide's Keswick Station for a brief tour about town. Next to the train station is the opulent West Terrace Cemetery.

While there, I saw this particular tombstone, and I don't know what struck me more: That Henry Holmes died at about the same age as I am, that he died riding in a local horse race (a hurdle race, at that), that his tombstone was in danger of falling over, or that his wife's name appears to be misspelled.

(On the side of the tombstone is even something more somber: the birth and death dates of two Holmes children who died in infancy. What a tragic family.)

But Henry's ghost can take solace in the fact that he's remembered a century later -- his marker is at the front of the cemetery and can be seen easily from the nearby sidewalk.

No word on Kanmantoo's fate.

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